Brenn-O-Kem Worcester/Breedekloof Winemaker of the Year 2019 announced

Tuesday, 3 December, 2019
Worcester/Breedekloof Wine Valley
Botha Cellars senior winemaker, Michiel Visser, is the 2019 Brenn-O-Kem Worcester/Breedekloof Winemaker of the Year. The awards lunch was hosted at Benguela Cove Estate in Hermanus on Friday 29 November.

The event is proudly sponsored by Brenn-O-Kem, a company specialising in transforming winery waste into value-added natural products used in the wine industry, pharmaceutical industry and other markets since 1968.

This sought after award, now in its eight year of its current format, is awarded annually to a winemaker in the Worcester/Breedekloof region.

"It is a great honor to be singled out in a region with so much winemaking talent - if you work hard you will reap the benefits, never give up," said Michiel Visser. "The awards are a great initiative for our area and encourage us to live our passion," says Visser.

The independent judging panel has five members who all taste the wines blind where after the Top 5 wines in each category are selected. 

The winemaker who has the most points in the different categories is awarded “Winemaker of the Year.”

Winners in other categories

The Top White Wine (sponsored by Wine Machinery Group) was clinched by Cilmor Cellar Sauvignon Blanc 2019 and the Top Red Wine (sponsored by Porex) was awarded to Bergsig Oom Prop Cabernet Sauvignon 2015.

The Swarte Piet Trophy – awarded to the winemaker who best represented the region in the South African wine industry in 2019, was won by Nico Grundling from Slanghoek Cellar for his overall performance at shows and competitions in 2019.

Competition format & judging process

The format of the competition is as follows - each cellar from the Worcester/Breedekloof region enters three to five wines in a category.  These wines need to be available for purchase at their tasting rooms or other stores.

There are eight categories in which the wines are judged blind - chenin blanc, sauvignon blanc, other white or any wooded white wine, red- and white blends, pinotage, shiraz and cabernet sauvignon. 

92 entries form 21 producers were judged by:

  • Tom Block (Convener) – Cape Wine Master
  • Anton Swarts - Cape Wine Master & Spier Winemaker
  • Jaco Potgieter – DGB wine buyer
  • Susan Erasmus – Laffort SA
  • Altus le Roux – wine consultant
Michiel Visser (Botha Kelder) and Theuns Botha (Brenn O Kem)
Michiel Visser (Botha Kelder) and Theuns Botha (Brenn O Kem)

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